The U.S. Navy christened its Spearhead-class expeditionary fast transport, the future USNS Cody (T-EPF-14), during a 10:00 a.m. ceremony Saturday, February 25, in Mobile, Alabama.
The Honorable Matt Hall, Mayor of Cody, Wyoming, delivered the ceremonial principal address. Additional speakers included Vice Admiral Francis Morley, principal military deputy to the Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Research, Development, and Acquisition; The Honorable Greg Reed, president pro tempore of the Alabama state senate; Rear Admiral Bruce Gillingham, Surgeon General of the Navy; Rear Admiral Michael Wettlaufer, commander, Military Sealift Command; Mr. Rusty Murdaugh, president, Austal USA; and Mr. Stan Kordana, vice president of Surface Systems, General Dynamics Mission Systems.
In a time-honored Navy tradition, Averil Spencer, the ship’s sponsor, christened the ship by breaking a bottle of sparkling wine across the bow. Spencer is the daughter of the Honorable Richard V. Spencer, 76th Secretary of the U.S. Navy.
«This ship is the first to honor the city of Cody, Wyoming, a city that proudly embodies America’s independence and fighting spirit», said Secretary of the U.S. Navy Carlos Del Toro. «The future USNS Cody (T-EPF-14) will also be the first Flight II configuration in its class, bringing enhanced medical capabilities in addition to its high-speed sealift mobility and agility. I look forward to the depth that this expeditionary fast transport will add to our fleet».
The future USNS Cody (T-EPF-14) will join the fleet as one of nearly 100 U.S. Navy ships operating globally each day ensuring freedom of the seas, protecting international law, and strengthening relationships with Allies and partners.
The Navy’s Military Sealift Command will operate the future USNS Cody (T-EPF-14), the first Flight II configured Spearhead-class expeditionary fast transport (EPF). The ship is named in honor of Cody, Wyoming, and is the first ship in naval service named after the city.
EPFs, formerly designated as Joint High Speed Vessels, are all-aluminum catamarans that provide high-speed, shallow-draft transportation capability to support the intra-theater maneuver of personnel, supplies, and equipment for the U.S. Navy, Marine Corps, and Army. EPFs enable the rapid projection, agile maneuver, and sustainment of forces in response to a wide range of military and civilian contingencies such as Non-Combatant Evacuation Operations (NEO), Humanitarian Assistance, and Disaster Relief (HADR).
The Flight II ships will enhance the medical mission capability of the EPF’s mission portfolio. With an embarked medical unit, the Flight II EPF will have two operating rooms, the ability to support approximately 41 medical patients, and 147 embarked forces. Flight II EPFs will have an 11M Rigid Inflatable Boat (RIB) and MV-22 capability.